NUTS:  Not Understanding True Self

Sometimes in life we base who and what we are on old outdated beliefs which were implanted in us by society, or by parental units, or simply by our own perceptions at the time.  And sometimes, who and what we are changes...but we never change those old outdated beliefs, and so we live a life filled with fear and uncertainty.  We are tired, out of balance, we don't take good care of ourselves and we feel ashamed, guilty or not quite right.

We are NUTS.

The opposite of NUTS is SANE:  Self Aware Now Enjoy

When we become self aware, we can enjoy life.  But only if our behavior matches our beliefs.  But self awareness is the first step.

How to do that?  There are so many helpful processes out there, ranging from the 12 steps to Byron Katie's The Work, to the Ladder of Inference to Fear to Faith.  Which one you use depends on which one you resonate with.  For example, I did not resonate at all with The Work, but I found the Ladder of Inference to be very helpful.

In future posts I will say a bit more about each of these processes, but for now, I hope you will find a way to experience SANE in your life, not NUTS.  And if you want some help, I've got a full calendar of workshops and classes coming up to facilitate SANE.  The next one is this Tuesday, March 14.  See details and register in the store below.

 

Today is March 4.....March Fourth....FORTH!

Are you marching forth today?

I love it when dates line up like this.  It gives me a time to play with the words a bit.  And it serves as a metaphor.

To march means to walk with a regular tread, in a deliberate manner.  When I was a kid, I played clarinet in a marching band.  I remember the parades...we would prepare ourselves by rehearsing the music, then rehearsing and marching at the same time.  Then the day would come when it was time to execute what we had learned and rehearsed.  We would put on the band uniforms and proceed to the staging area.  No matter what we were feeling or what the weather was, we marched.  And we marched towards a goal, the end of the parade.   During the parade I remember I wasn't thinking too much about the end goal.  I was thinking more about keeping in step and playing the right notes along the way.  One step and one note at a time.  Sometimes a little dance might be done.  Sometimes we marched in place so we didn't run into the group in front of us.  And I had my team members to support me, so if I somehow lost step I could glance to my right or left and see which foot needed to be forward.

I've found life to be a bit like this.....preparation, execution, focus and seeking support along the way.

We prepare not so much by rehearsing, but by visioning, dreaming, figuring out who we are and what we want.  Classes and coaching services are excellent for figuring this out.  Then we execute:  there might be a timeline, written out steps to take.  We keep our focus by using affirmations and meditation, and support comes in the form of talking with others, sharing what is going on with us.  And sometimes support comes in the form of resting, taking another class, reading a new book.

For me, the important part is the focus.  I sometimes lose my focus.  I get discouraged.  This is when the support is really important.  I use a coach to remind me of what my goal is. I use classes to learn new ways to reach my goals.  And sometimes I use classes because I've realized that I need a new goal.  Or a new way to reach my goal.

And I continue to march forward, no matter what.

Are you continuing your march?  Today might be a good day to review where you are in your own personal march, and adjust your steps as needed.

 

Ok.  I'm excited now.  I've got a lineup of workshops, classes and a retreat that is designed to ROCK YOUR WORLD!

Between now and June:  four workshops, one class and one retreat.  All are designed to do one thing and one thing only:  move you from a life in which you experience fear or limitation or frustration to a life in which you experience love and joy, no limits and easy flow.

Here they all are, on one graphic, for easy reference:

Topics on tap:  Balance and self care, creativity, meditation, success, forward movement and playtime!

Invest in one or invest in them all.  I will give you a hint:  there is a two-for-one special on the workshops at the end of the list.

 

 

 

 

I have learned that the old saying is true:  an unexamined life is worth very little.

Is your life working for you?  Do your days go smoothly, and things seem to fall into place easily?  If so, good for you!  But if life seems like a constant struggle, or you get sick all the time, or it seems like there is just one road block after another getting in the way of what you want to do, or there is a lot of drama, then consider that change begins within, and it begins with examining what your attitudes, beliefs and thoughts are up to.  For that is where the circumstances of your life are formed.  Things do not change from the outside in.  They change from the inside out.  In other words, you can't move, or switch jobs, or switch partners, and think that your life is going to change.  You have still brought you with you, wherever you go and whatever you do.  The change must begin within you, and it begins with examining what is going on in there.

Examine your thoughts, beliefs and attitudes, without shame, blame or guilt, and I guarantee your life will improve.  And if you want help doing so, contact me!

 

Let's face it, life is full of all kinds of stuff:  some we label as good, some we label as bad.  Today I want to talk about what we sometimes label as bad:  change or loss.  Loss happens.  So does change.  Relationships end.  Jobs and careers go away.  Things happen.  So often the tendency is to somehow make the feelings as a result of those losses go away.  We don't want to hurt.  In fact, there is a judgement about the hurting itself, as if there is something shameful or wrong about it.  We tell ourselves we shouldn't hurt, to put our big boy and girl panties on and buck up.  We try to hide it, deny it, medicate it, do anything except feel it.

When we do, all we do is form ugly scar tissue over the break.  We heal it, but we don't cure it.  We don't do our grief work.  Because of this, we are doomed to a life where we may not feel the hurt acutely anymore, but all of our reactions and decisions are consequently based on that one event.  We've got tunnel vision and it is very limiting.

Here are some examples:

  • The relationship ends, and instead of doing our inner work to learn the lesson, we immediately get into another one.
  • We experience a loss, and instead of going through a grieving process, we get a prescription.
  • Something "bad" happens, and instead of working through it, we get so busy that we have no time to thing.

I'd like to propose that there is a different, gentler way to do things, and it is also more rewarding in the long run.

The difference between a broken heart and a broken-open heart is profound.  We all have times and instances in which our hearts get broken.  We hurt.  Eventually we heal, somewhat, but it is never cured.  There is a difference between healing and curing.  Healing is temporary and very shallow. Curing is permanent and goes deep.  Healing only takes care of the surface wounds.  Curing changes us at deep levels, and such change is necessary for us to move into the next greatest expression of being.

A broken-open heart can be the way to a cure.  It is a doorway through which we can live a new and wonderful life.

If your heart is broken, I'd like to suggest that you do not medicate it, jump into another relationship, make yourself so busy you have no time to think, or any of the other things we typically do to make the bad feelings just go away.

Instead, feel them.  Acknowledge the grief and allow the process to happen.  Do the inner work, because a broken-open heart is a doorway into new ways of thinking and perceiving ourselves and life.  Consider getting support and help moving through the process

 

Life is about paradox.  Surrender to win.  What you resist persists.  Give to receive.  Accept a problem to solve it.  I will never forget the first time, very early in my spiritual journey, a mentor told me that I must surrender to win.  Fighter that I had been most of my life, it was extremely difficult for me to understand this concept.  I had a bias against traditional religious language back then and in my mind I thought I was surrendering to a male authority figure that was separate from me.  I wanted no part of that.  Eventually I moved into a place of surrendering to a process that promised wonderful things if I completed it, and that worked.

Which brings up another paradox of sorts.  One must go through something to get around it.  Take loss, for example.  It does absolutely no good, and sometimes harms, to not properly grieve a loss.  Rebound relationships are an excellent example of this.

Another paradox is that we must look at ourselves with love and acceptance, not shame and condemnation.  Those parts of ourselves that we find objectionable will only change if we love and accept them.  Shaming them and condemning them just makes them stronger.

What are you resisting today?   Is it persisting?

The beauty of living a life which contains a consistent and persistent practice of compassionate self inquiry is that it allows us to be aware of what is blocking us from our good, and with awareness comes the beautiful change that that moves us into the next greatest expression of our being.

"When they go low, we go high."  Michelle Obama

I loved it when Michelle Obama said this.  It made me feel proud of my leaders.  It gave me a little bit of hope in a time of hopelessness, and little bit of relief from hateful rhetoric.

How ironic that I have found myself on the receiving end of someone saying, "when you go low, I go high."

That I have been so misunderstood makes me sad...and angry.

I think I have pretty good communication skills.  I've been told I do.  I think I've communicated fairly well in this situation.  Somehow I think it is not that the person on the other end doesn't hear, I think it is that person doesn't WANT to hear.

More sadness, and anger, and grief....at the loss of a relationship that could have moved into a higher level and instead has disintegrated into nothingness, because I grow weary of being accused of negativity in every interaction, whether it is written or spoken.

It is during times like these that I think about my values, and principles that carry me when personalities would attempt to shatter everything I stand for.

One of those principles is oneness.  I saw the separation during and even now, after this most recent election.  I saw the rhetoric from both sides.  And I also saw the beginnings of a solution, from some people whose opinions I highly value.  People who spoke of the principle of oneness.  Meaning that there is no us and them.  That we are all connected on deep levels.  Meaning that when we hurt another, we are also hurting ourselves.  These same people called for communication, for listening on a deep level.  They called for a listening to the cries of the folks who "went low."  I've listened to some of those folks.  I've discovered that they are not going low.  They want change.  The status quo is no longer acceptable.  Yes, it is a shame that the current representative of change couches his language in hatred and shaming and demeaning.  But we are stIll one.

And so, being on the receiving end of someone who says they are going high...well, I am like those conservative folks who just want to be heard.  And not be accused of going low.  And so I speak, and will continue to do so, in the way I've always spoken, with gentleness but firmness.  I won't attack, because I recognize that is only a reaction to fear.  I just speak the truth, quietly and firmly, and then I stand by it.  And when the other party refuses to hear, and attacks in their fear, I pray.  Yep...I pray.  I pray for them.  Because of oneness.  Because when I pray for them, I'm praying for me too.

There are other principles and values that I stand for, but they tell me blogs are supposed to be short.  So I end it here.

 

All around me people are announcing that mercury is in retrograde.  Admittedly, I'm not hearing  these announcements, I'm seeing them in print.  But the impression I am getting is that if they were saying this, it would be said with the same feeling tone as that old ditty:  "THE SKY IS FALLING!  THE SKY IS FALLING!"

I wasn't sure why, so I looked it up.  Now I know why I didn't know what it meant that mercury was in retrograde:  it's astrology.

Now, before you think this is going to be an attack on astrology, it isn't.  I think the human habit of attacking something we don't believe in or disagree with is abhorrent.  But that is the subject for another blog post.

I've never been a fan of astrology, even though I know a lot of people who are.  Here is why I've never been a fan of it:  because it is one more example of basing our decisions on something outside of ourselves.  I feel the same way about anything that tells us to ignore our own truth and instead follow the dictates of another.  Traditional religion as it is currently taught does this.  So does most of the New Age stuff.  I love New Thought because it teaches us to go within, know our own truth, and proceed accordingly.  And by the way, I love candles, scented oils, and even crystals and all sorts of other New Age gimmicks.  But I'm not going to base my decisions on them.  They are just nice things.  And sometimes excellent reminders of my own truth, which I discovered by going within.

Back to this current retrograde Mercury thing.  Instead of just ignoring it, I decided to ask, what is it all about?  And got this link for an answer:  https://www.astrologyzone.com/everything-you-need-to-know-about-mercury-retrograde/

I read the article.  Seems we aren't supposed to make important decisions, sign contracts or have elective surgery during this time.

Sigh.  Really?  Ok.  Here's the deal about important decisions:  I know that I shouldn't be making them under duress.  In other words, don't make decisions when angry, grieving, sad or excited.  Settle down, go within, meditate, know your truth.  Then make the decision.

Here's the deal about contracts:  If it is time to sign a contract, I am certainly not going to tell the other person involved in the deal that I need to wait until mercury is out of retrograde to sign it.

And I don't believe in elective surgery, so that is a no brainer for me.

My point here is this:  We have an entire culture of people who seem to base who and what they are on outside things.  Everything from doing what your peers do to blindly  following religious dogma to allowing what the planets are doing to effect your life.   I love the empowering message of New Thought:  go within...find that part of yourself that knows...and be and do that.

Everything I do, from my ministry to my counseling, from workshops and retreats to my book (www.newthought12steps.com) is a variation on this one thing:  I teach people tools that they can then use to go within and find their own truth.

Bottom line:  I'm not going to base my life on someone else's interpretation of something outside myself, including whether or not mercury is in retrograde.  How about you?

Perhaps you were a bit like me growing up:  you started wondering what you were going to do for a living.  And perhaps you had parents like mine, who responded the same way to every idea I had:  "You can't make any money in that."  And maybe....just maybe....like me, you wondered if money was the only important consideration in choosing a career.

I pondered that, and somehow, without being coached, I knew that not only was money not an important consideration in choosing a career, it barely made the list.  What was important was that I enjoyed my work.  It has never made sense to me to spend 8 plus hours a day, 5 days a week, doing something I didn't enjoy just to bring home a paycheck.  Later on I learned that somehow I had figured out one of life's big truths:  we need to be doing what we love, or we fall prey to all sorts of misery:  chronic illness, fatigue, depression.

And, like one of my favorite all time quotes, I also knew that if I built it, they would come.  Because the Law of Attraction is always in place.

What do you long for?  What calls to your spirit?  If it is calling, there is a way to earn a good living from it.  Explore that, and don't be afraid to jump in.  Remember that what you focus on tends to manifest, so don't focus on what you don't want.  Dream big, and focus on that.

I can help you dial it in.  Contact me for information on business coaching.

meme

"Pursue the obstacle. It will set you free."  Mark Nepo

Do you have an obstacle in your life?  Something that seems to block your way no matter which way you turn?

I'm not speaking of an outer obstacle here, although if outer obstacles keep appearing that can be an indicator that something in your life needs to change.  But for this post I am referring to inner obstacles.

Maybe a fear that keeps you from taking that next indicated right step.  Or stubbornness.  I'm sure you are familiar with this:  you know a change in thinking would be the best thing, but you stubbornly refuse to make the change...just because.  Or maybe it is anxiety.  The thought of doing something makes you short of breath.

These are the obstacles to which I am referring.

What Mark Nepo is suggesting with his quote is that instead of trying to get rid of the obstacle, or attempting to block it somehow, we pursue it.  He clarifies, in his book titled "The Book of Awakening:" "we are asked not to oppose what blocks us as something mounting its will against our own. For the obstacle will simply give our resistance back to us. We are being asked not to empower or perpetuate the life of the obstacle, but to step aside if we can with openness to the energy of the obstacle—much like the ancient art of Aikido, where instead of blocking a punch, you help the punch move past you."

How could this be done?  Nepo suggests that we describe the obstacle as a part of nature.  Sort of like the deer in the headlights. And then ask ourselves how is what we want or need colliding with what it wants or needs?

When we go within and get in touch with our inner wisdom, the answers will come.  The obstacle isn't really an obstacle.  It's a doorway.  Open the door.

I now have some openings to help you move beyond your inner obstacles.  Contact me now for more information!